President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday discussed brokering “commitments of noninterference” in the U.S. political system during a lengthy face-to-face meeting in Germany, the first in-person encounter between the two leaders about Russia’s alleged role in the 2016 election.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who attended the two-hour-and-fifteen-minute meeting, said it did not focus on the United States moving to punish Russia for the allegations that it hacked and leaked information that would help Trump win the election. Instead, Tillerson said the two leaders discussed “how do we move forward” regarding the election-hacking issue.
“The president pressed President Putin on more than one occasion regarding Russian involvement,” Tillerson said. “President Putin denied such involvement, as I think he has in the past.”
Tillerson said the White House was not “dismissing the issue” but wanted to focus on “how do we secure a commitment” that there will not be interference in the future.
President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin held their first face-to-face meeting since Mr. Trump took office on Friday during the G20 summit, discussing Syria and North Korea, as well as Russian meddling in the 2016 election. Judy Woodruff learns more from special correspondent Ryan Chilcote.
Donald Trump Jr. is in a legal danger zone following his acknowledgment that he met during the heat of the 2016 presidential campaign with a Russian lawyer with Kremlin ties who offered to deliver damaging information about Hillary Clinton.
Democratic and Republican lawyers and political operatives alike say President Donald Trump’s oldest son’s explanations about the meeting last June are way out of step with common campaign practices when dealing with offers for opposition research.
But perhaps far more important, his statements put him potentially in legal crosshairs for violating federal criminal statutes prohibiting solicitation or acceptance of anything of value from a foreign national, as well as a conspiracy to defraud the United States.
Politically, by discussing such a sensitive topic that could prove embarrassing if revealed, Trump Jr. and the other Trump campaign officials in the room for the meeting with Russian attorney Natalia Veselnitskaya, including Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort, may have also exposed themselves to future blackmail threats, the legal experts said.
Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin finally met face-to-face. Trump reportedly raised Russian interference in the election, but many experts say it appears the meeting was a victory for the Russians. David Filipov, Julianne Smith, and Michael McFaul join Ari Melber.